The City of Long Beach and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers held a joint signing ceremony celebrating the signing of a shared cost for the East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration Study.
After U.S. Rep. Alan Lowenthal of Long Beach; Maj. Gen. Ed Jackson, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Deputy Commanding General for Civil and Emergency Operations; Mayor Robert Garcia; Councilwoman Suzie Price all spoke on the importance of the study and the addition of recreation in the bay, they ceremonially signed a poster representing the cost share agreement.
“We have a unique opportunity, and a challenging task,” said Maj. Gen. Ed Jackson, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Deputy Commanding General for Civil and Emergency Operations, “to investigate together how we can best restore a Southern California coastal marine environment located in a heavily urbanized location, near one of the world’s largest port complexes, at the mouth of one of the nation’s most altered rivers, the Los Angeles River.”
The study area is located offshore of the City of Long Beach, California in the easternmost part of San Pedro Bay. The purpose of the study is to evaluate opportunities for providing ecosystem restoration, increased recreational opportunities and other improvements off-shore of the City of Long Beach within East San Pedro Bay. The area is between the Long Beach shoreline and the offshore Middle and Long Beach Breakwaters.
“This is a momentous occasion for Long Beach, because restoring our local ecosystem will have global implications,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “Improving the coastal experience and ecosystem in our city is a win for residents, visitors, and will be a boost to the Long Beach economy.”
Intervention is needed to correct deficiencies and restore the environment within the study area. Otherwise, the degradation of the East San Pedro Bay ecosystem will continue with the existing development, increase to the population and demand for recreational activities in the study area. The City of Long Beach has requested to provide $1.5 million in accelerated funds and $750, 000 in contributed funds to complete much of the study.
USACE and the City of Long Beach have committed to mitigating any impacts to maritime operations within the project area, and will not accept negative impacts to coastal homes and infrastructure.
Today’s signing enables USACE to accept local funding to begin the East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration Study. The study costs $3 million, and will be shared between the City and USACE. Ecosystem Restoration is one of the primary missions of the Army Corps.
The study conforms to the USACE three-by-three-by-three program. The three-by-three-by-three means that our projects should take less than three years to complete, cost less than $3 million and undergo only three levels of review. The idea behind 3x3x3 is that it will ultimately reduce the time it takes the corps to deliver the product to our stake-holders and will cut costs by limiting the review to just what is needed to make our decision and reduce the amount of reviews required for each step of the process.